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- The Johns Hopkins University. Ph.D.; M.A.
- The State Univ. of New York at Buffalo. B.A. summa cum laude
- Interdisciplinary approaches to European culture including literature, art, history of medicine, natural history, philosophy, and popular culture in France (primarily), Italy, Belgium, England, The Netherlands, Austria
- Seventeenth-century French literature, French theater, fairy tales
- Wax anatomical models and the history of anatomical display, 17th-21st centuries
- Literary, cultural and cross-disciplinary theory
- Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for French and Francophone Studies, Modern Language Association
- Fellow, Camargo Foundation, Cassis France
- American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship for Recent Recipients of the Ph.D.
- Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Teaching
- Research awards: Institute for Research in the Humanities, Humanities Council, NEH Endowment Fund, Research Relations Committee, Office of Women’s Research
- Society of Pleasures: Interdisciplinary Readings in Pleasure and Power during the Reign of Louis XIV. NY: St. Martin’s Press and Macmillan Press (London), 1997.
- Translator of J. Stengers and A. Van Neck, Histoire d’une grande peur: la masturbation. English title: Masturbation: History of a Great Terror. NY: Palgrave Press, 2001
- books in progress on anatomical reveries in museums, art, and literature and on imaginaries of the female body
Articles, recent and forthcoming
- “Excursions to See ‘Monsters’: Odd Bodies and Itineraries of Knowledge in the Seventeenth Century” in Susan McClary, ed. Structures of Feeling in Seventeenth Century Cultural Expression. Univ. of Toronto Press, forthcoming.
- “Private Practices, Public Cures: Masturbation and Medical Fantasies of the Sexual Body” in Diane Brown and Shane Agin, eds. Sexual Education in Eighteenth-Century France. SVEC, forthcoming.
- “Wandering in the Company of Skeletons: Imaginaries of the Body Across Anatomy and Art” Second Nature: International Journal of Creative Media 1:3 (2010) 48-73.
- “’Vertebrae on Which a Seraph Might Make Music.’” PMLA 125:1 (2010) 152-160.
- “The Theatrical Cadaver: Staging Death in the Seventeenth Century”, Calendrier électronique des spectacles sous l’Ancien Régime (CESAR) 2008 http://www.cesar.org.uk/cesar2/conferences/conference_2008/hoffmann_08.html
- “The West Looked Up the Skirts of Venus: Myth and Social Commentary in Masami Teraoka’s Art” in Ascending Chaos: The Art of Masami Teraoka 1966-2006. San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2007,194-207.
- “Sleeping Beauties in the Fairground: The Spitzner, Pedley, and Chemisé Exhibits,” Early Popular Visual Culture 4:2 (July 2006) 139-159.
Recent lectures, selected
Australian Network for Art and Technology; Centro d’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci/Accademia di Belle Arti; Modern Language Association; National Library of Medicine; Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute; European Association of Museums of the History of Medical Sciences; Metamorphoses: An International Colloquium on Narrative and Folklore; Structures of Feeling in Seventeenth-Century Cultural Expression,Clark Library UCLA; History of Science Society
FR 411 (Masterpieces of the 17th century), FR 421 (French Theatre), FR 690 (The Theater in France); FR 620 (Masterpieces of the 17thCentury); LLEA 270 (Freaks and Monsters); LLEA 471B (Fairies, Devils, and Fantasy); LLEA 680E (Introduction to literary theory)